Decades ago, the American dream involved a white picket fence. Though it stood as a symbol of the ideal life (complete with apple pie and 2.5 kids), times have changed. The white picket fence is undoubtedly still a popular choice, but it is by no means the only choice. With the practicality of the modern age comes fences that are as beautiful as they are functional; let’s take a look at four different types.

  • Privacy: Most forms of residential fencing are designed to provide a barrier between homes. Whether your neighbors are nosy or you’re just trying to create a backyard all your own, privacy fences will have tightly spaced vertical boards, pickets (pointed stakes), or framed panels to prevent you from seeing out and others from seeing in.
  • Security: Sometimes, privacy isn’t enough. If you’re trying to keep people out of your yard, you’ll need a fence that’s six feet tall or higher to prevent anyone from hopping over it. Vertical boards with pointed tips, like pickets, can also help deter climbers — especially if the fence’s outer face is smooth, leaving no other place to step.
  • Decorative: Fences can fulfill aesthetic roles as well as practical ones. Decorative fences are used to establish property lines, add a structural element to the landscape, and also boost curb appeal. They don’t need to be overly large or cumbersome (which will make fence installation all the easier), so many people favor spaced pickets, latticework, or other ornamental designs that enhance the view rather than block it.
  • Safety: If you own a dog, a pool, or want to deter wild animals from trespassing on your property, wire and chain link fencing is a popular choice. They’re economical and don’t take away from your view, yet still perform a very important role. In fact, most local U.S. codes require that you surround your pool with a fence at least four feet high.

When you know what your main goal is, finding the right fence for the job becomes easy. Best of all, you can hire a company to perform your residential fence installation for you — after all, why would you pick up a hammer if you don’t have to? From wood fencing to vinyl fencing (and all the styles in between), your personal needs will be met and your yard will have never looked better.